As the 2022 Formula One season draws to a close, there has been much speculation about the future plans of Daniel Ricciardo. With only two races left in his contract with McLaren, the Australian driver has yet to confirm his plans for 2023 and beyond.
One possibility that had been discussed was Ricciardo taking up a reserve role at Mercedes and potentially replacing Lewis Hamilton if the seven-time world champion did not continue beyond 2023. However, Hamilton recently confirmed his intention to renew his contract with Mercedes, effectively closing the door on that particular scenario.
Ricciardo gave his reaction to Hamilton’s announcement in an interview with F1’s official website. “The truth is I want him to stay in the sport,” he said. “He’s one of the greatest ever to do it and I think competing with him, going wheel to wheel with him, is fun, it’s awesome.”
Despite the disappointment of not being able to compete with Hamilton at Mercedes, Ricciardo remained positive about his future in the sport. “I certainly wish to do that more in the future,” he said, referring to his desire to race against Hamilton.
When asked if Hamilton’s decision affected his future plans, Ricciardo replied, “I think my future will be… I don’t think it’s relative to what others do. I think it’s, how do I say it, like opportunities will arise when they do. But I’m not banking on anyone doing something so I can find my way.”
As Ricciardo’s contract with McLaren draws to a close, fans of the Australian driver are anticipating news of his next move. While nothing has been confirmed yet, it seems likely that Ricciardo will continue racing in Formula One and could be back on the grid in 2024.